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A Criminal Defense Attorney's View
The police will find a household in which spouses have argued and are emotionally upset. The officers will separate the parties and conduct a brief interview of each's version of events. The police will look for physical signs of violence, such as bleeding, red marks, or scratches. Then the two officers will confer with each other and compare stories. A decision to arrest will then be made. This entire "investigative" process can be completed in mere minutes, with the arrest decision made in a split second.
'What couple does not encounter stress, especially when they have children? But in the fever of emotion, a woman can call "911" and have three police cars there in minutes. After this fateful act, she loses all control. The state prosecutes her husband whether she likes it or not. He is jailed and prohibited from returning home... And all they wanted was the police to defuse a tense situation...
This policy (Zero Tolerance) is designed to accustom society (both police and victims) to the intrusion of the state into private lives. Couples are arrested just for having an argument. Neighbors phone the police. What's next? Cameras in our homes just like George Orwell's "1984"?
Editorial, Winnipeg Free Press,
"Zero Tolerance," February 10, 2002
The Dallas County Texas Task Force on Domestic Violence was a federal grant award recipient in 1998 for $1,333,951.00. The title of the award, "Grants To Encourage Arrest Policies," is a federal directive encouraging "Zero Tolerance." The grant states:
Purpose: These funds will allow the Dallas County Task Force to continue ensuring arrests and prosecution of domestic violence offenders, provide counseling and support to victims, and ensure that victims have access to protective orders. Funds will support the addition of staff attorneys and prosecutors.
And then the case will not be dropped.
"Zero Tolerance" by the police leads to a "No-Drop" policy by the prosecution. An arrest means the case will be prosecuted. Prosecution offices associated with Family Advocacy Centers will proceed with the case even if the family situation has been resolved. An "Affidavit of Non-Prosecution" is ineffective as this legal document merely reflects what the victim wants to do. The affidavit indicates the family is in healing and desires to work on repairing the marital relationship. The Domestic Violence Industry does not consider salvaging the marital relationship as an acceptable end result. The "protectors" view their job entails ending the relationship.
Prosecutors are not concerned with the wishes or needs of the real victim. The "No-Drop" policy requires the case to go to trial even if the real victim wants the charges dismissed.
"No-Drop" means the government will push the case all the way regardless of hardship upon the family. To the entrepreneurs of the Domestic Violence Industry, "helping" the victim may necessitate separation of the family enforced through protective orders, followed by divorce. In addition, the helping agenda may include loss of employment for the accused spouse, financial hardship, and adding unnecessary emotional stress to a family.
"Zero Tolerance" means that the government, not you, knows what is best for your family.
If the government is so concerned about stopping family violence and helping families, why would they push prosecution when the family is asking them not to?
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